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The lifespan of the Shikoku dog breed is around 10 to 12 years.
Loyal, calm, and focused, the Shikoku makes an excellent companion to a similar human. They can get along with children, but this somewhat reserved breed might not take to overly energetic children — or adults, for that matter!
The Shikoku is still an incredibly rare breed outside of its native Japan, and the prices of puppies will reflect that. Breeders may be challenging to find in North America, but you should be prepared to pay at least $800. Many factors may bring that price up as well, some Shikoku dogs even going for as much as $5000.
The Shikoku tends to shed its coat at least one to two times a year. The dog has a fairly thick coat with pointed ears and a curved tail.
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*Please Note: It is difficult to know which breeder is trustworthy when you are in another country. But fortunately there are reputable associations that can guarantee the quality of breeders who are members of their association. These can be mentioned as Japan Kennel Club – JKC, The Kennel Club of Japan – KC or Nihonken Hozonkai – 日保 and many other associations (JABC, JCC, ICC, CPRO, JCU, KCP, ACC, CCJ, KCC, NMSA, WCA, JMSA, ZCC). Dogs and Cats sold by breeders belonging to these associations are always accompanied by a pedigree certificate.
JP-Pets will act on your behalf, carry out the necessary export procedures quickly, accurately and professionally to ensure that the dog can be delivered to your hands. About exporting methods, you can see more here: Exporting Methods.
Once used as a boar-hunter in remote mountain regions of Japan, the Shikoku remained largely inaccessible for crossbreeding. As a result, this breed is very true to its origins. Resilient, agile, and keen to chase other animals, the Shikoku is challenging to train but forms a close bond with people it loves and trusts.
The Shikoku is the rarest and most primitive of the Japanese breeds. It resembles a wolf, and legend has it that the breed has some wolf blood, but this is probably not the case. This belief probably arose mainly from the dog’s appear- ance, and from the fact that the wolf is thought to have survived longer on the island of Shikoku the place of this dog’s origin than elsewhere in Japan.
The Shikoku does look fierce, almost wild. Its stride is smooth and swift like a wolf’s, and it’s superb ability to leap makes it well-suited to running through mountains and hills.
It was protected and preserved for its skill in hunting -mainly of wild boar in the mountains and hills of the Shikoku Mountains in Kochi Prefecture, on Shikoku, the smallest of Japan’s four main islands, located southwest of the main island of Honshu. It is also known as the Kochi inu, and was called Tosa inu in ancient times, but today it is called Shikoku to avoid confusion with another Japanese breed, the Tosa Fighting Dog. The Shikoku is thought to have been one of the dogs used as a basis for the Tosa Fighting Dog, but its physical build is completely different from that of the Tosa.
In the past, Shikoku lived with matagi, or hunters, in parts of western and northern Shikoku. These are areas of steep mountain ranges and difficult access, which limited interbreeding between these different locations, with the result that the breed became divided into several distinct lineages.
Shikoku dogs can first be broadly categorized into dogs from the eastern Shikoku Mountains, called the Mount Tsurugi strain, and those from the west- em mountains, called the Mount Ishizuchi strain. The Mount Tsurugi strain is further divided into the Tokushima (or Iya) strain, from the northwestern foot of the mountains, and the Kochi Aki strain from the southeast. The Mount Ishizuchi strain is divided into three: the Ehime-ken Shuso-gun strain in the north, the Honkawa strain in the south, and to the southwest the Hata Uwahara strain. Each of these strains originally had distinctive features in terms of physical build, which probably arose in response to the regions’ different topographies.
Rugged terrain made many parts of Shikoku very difficult to access, resulting in the breed’s having a high degree of purity. The fact that the bloodlines of these dogs could be traced historically through generation after generation led Nippo to make the Shikoku and the Kishu, another medium-sized breed that originated in a remote area, the basis for its Standard for all the Japanese breeds.
The Shikoku is energetic and highly alert and requires hard outdoor exercise. It is capable of forming a close bond with its owner, provided that the owner is experienced at handling dogs. Its nature is to be loyal, independent, standoffish, and reserved. The dog can sometimes tum on people even people it should know and lunge or bite.
The coat of the Shikoku is double. The color is usually sesame, or sometimes red, and very occasionally black. The Shikoku has designated a Protected Species in 1937. It is almost completely unknown outside Japan.
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